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Warren ’09 named Swearer Center’s first democracy fellow

CEO of Generation Citizen will explore role of democracy in education at Swearer Center

Contributing Writer
Thursday, November 2, 2017

Scott Warren ‘09, CEO of Generation Citizen, is the Swearer Center’s first Democracy Fellow. Last year, Warren was a Social Entrepreneur in Residence at The Swearer Center for Public Service.

The Swearer Center designated Scott Warren ’09 its first-ever Democracy Fellow, a position that will allow him to explore the terrain of democracy in higher education.

Warren is best known for being the CEO of Generation Citizen, a non-profit that focuses on bringing the topic of civics into the classroom in an action-oriented way, he said. Along with Anna Ninan ’09, the duo expanded the Providence project to six other cities.

“I’m really interested in how Brown can engage students to be more participant in our democracy, … especially when a lot of young people are questioning whether democracy can work,” Warren said.

With his new role at Swearer, Warren plans to bring practitioners and scholars to campus to  discuss the role of education and democracy.

Last year, Warren was selected to be a Social Entrepreneur in Residence at Swearer, and toward the end of the spring, he expressed an interest in extending his time there.

If funding is available, Swearer asks their entrepreneurs-in-residence  near the end of their appointment if they would like to continue their work at the center, Wright said.

As a fellow, Warren will “continue to be available for student office hours, he’ll remain engaged with faculty and community members around the topic of democracy and he’ll facilitate activities and conversations regarding the topic,” said Emily Wright, assistant director of communications and public engagement at Swearer.

This role of fellow is important because there needs to be more academic study on the subject of democracy and how it may or may not work in some places, said Senior Fellow at the Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs Richard Boucher.“We’ve always had this idea that democracies work better with an educated public, and that somehow people who are more able to understand the circumstances of a country, who are able to understand the ins and outs of policy and economics, make better decisions,” Boucher said.

Boucher also explained that higher education generally contributes to strengthening democracy, not only by training people who may participate in governance, but by training teachers and others who are going to support the mass education of the country.

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